XtremeLuke
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This is my first thread.

My college want me to write a PS draft, due within the next few days, so they can give me some feedback and I can use that over the summer. The dilemma is that I just can't make up my mind on what course I want to study, as it's such a big decision.

I'm currently doing Maths, FM, Chemistry and Physics. Since starting A level I have always leaned towards Physics and thought I would do that or Engineering at University. Recently, though I have dismissed the idea of Engineering, as I feel it would be too practical and the content wouldn't interest me. However, after a visit to the Imperial College open day, I discovered Materials and that area has been a part of science that think I am fond of- I like structures of materials in chemistry and why things behave differently (Also on the atomic level) etc. But I have not enjoyed doing learning the definitions of material characteristics in physics nor much of the Youngs Modulus stuff.

What does Materials (Science/Engineering) involve in relation to Physics, Chemistry, or Maths A level?

I also went to the Oxford open day and spent some time in the Materials Science department there, of which the lab tour was quite impressive. The course itself appealed to me as it didn't seem to practical.In the talk given there, they showed that the average Oxford graduate leaving salary was highest in Materials and at £35,000. This really appeals to me as it would help motivate me during the course. Is this correct as for other Materials departments I have not seen it this high?

Are Material Science courses similar at other Universities?

However, when researching the Oxford course, I started to understand that they think a course should be chosen with true passion for the subject you love. With Materials, I just don't feel passionate about it, as I'm not really sure on what it's like- I've had no experience. This made me think back to physics, which I have always liked and felt passionate about parts of it.

With Physics, there are some parts like Mechanics, Energy, Forces, Hookes Law and Viscosity which I like a lot. But Circuits, Waves and non-fundamental Electricity I was not so keen on. This may just be due to the way it was taught. (I've had 4 different physics teachers over the year).

I was looking through the Oxford prospectus, when I came across Physics and Philosophy. It combined the theoretical and fundamental parts of Physics with an added philosophical approach. At first seemed silly, as I knew someone who did Philosophy at Uni and they ended up with a rubbish job. But the more I thought about it, the more I found the idea attractive. I have never done philosophy at A level or GCSE. But I did RE and my teacher there was very philosophical and his lessons I always found extremely interesting. I always like to view concepts from different perspectives (e.g. religious and scientific) and see how they oppose one another, but yet are similar in principle . The more it churns in my mind the more I think the combination is something I could be passionate about.:confused: I've briefly read parts of philosophy A level text and it seems to draw me in. On the other hand, the career prospects do concern me (compared to materials).

Do you think Physics and Philosophy is right for me, or is it just a last minute attempt for a subject?

After a Physics and Philosophy degree, is it easy to specialise and go into engineerish areas such as Materials?

Also I've seen that only 12% of applicants get a place on the P&P course, compared to the 40% for Materials Science. Which worries me, as it's the course at Oxford which appeals to me.

If someone could just try and answer some of those questions, that would be a huge help. Sorry for writing so much, I'm just a bit worried. Thanks.
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Sci&Enggetoverit
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Hey 😃😃
I'm going into second year material science and engineering and I ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️love it but 😔 I just can't explain the subject to anyone cause it's ....it's ....😔 see.
So instead here is a bunch of information about my first year and I sunset you cross check with physics and see which you prefer more. Hope it will help 😏😏

N.B I think you should study physics cause I think they learn everything we do (plus more 😍😍 space and astronomy )
except a few things like chemistry😍😍, manufacturing and mining 😍😍stuff. P

Ok so
First year we studied (and I cross checked to see if I missed anything, just in case)

Thermodynamics
Crystallography
X-Ray Diffraction
Quantum mechanics
Surface science
Optical behaviour
Conductors (💙💙 piezoelectrics💙💙)
Nanotechnology ( theory and production methods)
Atomic and bonding structure
Electrics and magnetics
Thermal properties of materials
Polymer science
Phase equilibrium and microstructure
Mechanical behaviour
Ceramics
Metal production processing & Microstructure
Biomaterial and biomimics
Composites
Recycle,sustainability & economics
Maths 😍😍😍
And we also did career development classes and computers stuff like edupack & mathlab

Mostly we are taught heavy theory. Then they would sum it up and we would do labs on the subject (mostly second semester)

And our labs were not to prove the science but were mostly engineering stuff or breaking down stuff

Surprisingly, most of the topics like ceramics are not what you think and are super fascinating.

And the topics are hardly ever pure chem, physics or bio. They are all mashed up, even polymer science( At some point we wouldn't even talk about the chemistry, instead it was stats or molecular physics😢).

The year wasn't too hard mostly cause I had a crazy student to stuff ratio and most of my classmates were super intelligent so I just asked them everything 🙈

I like the fact that I can now understand most engineering fields and I could work in them 🙌
I hate how no one seems to know it and I have to explain it to them but I just can't

Hope this helps
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XtremeLuke
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Report Thread starter 7 years ago
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(Original post by Sci&Enggetoverit)
Hey 😃😃
I'm going into second year material science and engineering and I ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️love it but 😔 I just can't explain the subject to anyone cause it's ....it's ....😔 see.
So instead here is a bunch of information about my first year and I sunset you cross check with physics and see which you prefer more. Hope it will help 😏😏

N.B I think you should study physics cause I think they learn everything we do (plus more 😍😍 space and astronomy )
except a few things like chemistry😍😍, manufacturing and mining 😍😍stuff. P

Ok so
First year we studied (and I cross checked to see if I missed anything, just in case)

Thermodynamics
Crystallography
X-Ray Diffraction
Quantum mechanics
Surface science
Optical behaviour
Conductors (💙💙 piezoelectrics💙💙)
Nanotechnology ( theory and production methods)
Atomic and bonding structure
Electrics and magnetics
Thermal properties of materials
Polymer science
Phase equilibrium and microstructure
Mechanical behaviour
Ceramics
Metal production processing & Microstructure
Biomaterial and biomimics
Composites
Recycle,sustainability & economics
Maths 😍😍😍
And we also did career development classes and computers stuff like edupack & mathlab

Mostly we are taught heavy theory. Then they would sum it up and we would do labs on the subject (mostly second semester)

And our labs were not to prove the science but were mostly engineering stuff or breaking down stuff

Surprisingly, most of the topics like ceramics are not what you think and are super fascinating.

And the topics are hardly ever pure chem, physics or bio. They are all mashed up, even polymer science( At some point we wouldn't even talk about the chemistry, instead it was stats or molecular physics😢).

The year wasn't too hard mostly cause I had a crazy student to stuff ratio and most of my classmates were super intelligent so I just asked them everything 🙈

I like the fact that I can now understand most engineering fields and I could work in them 🙌
I hate how no one seems to know it and I have to explain it to them but I just can't

Hope this helps
Thanks for all this information, it's really useful and interesting to see what is really involved in Materials Science . Even though I'm not sure what a lot of the topics involve, stuff like crystallography, quantum mechanics, and mechanical behavior are just a few which sound really interesting.

It seems like you really have a passion for your course, which I admire. I would have thought the breadth of the course, and involvement with the range of sciences makes it look very employable. Do you think it has better career prospects than a physics course?

I like the sound of the layout. The heavy theory appeals to me, as I'm a bit lazy. Which University do go to? What other uni's did you apply for, and was it the same course?

I'd be really grateful if you could answer some of my questions again. Thanks, that did help a lot.
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